Artist Gallery Photo

The Senate

Mon, Dec 22 -
Tue, Dec 23, 2014

$28.50 ($6 Handling Fee Included) Minimum Donation All purchases are nonrefundable/nonexchangeable.

The Pacific Jazz Institute at Dimitriou's Jazz Alley welcomes the debut performance of Seattle-based trio, The Senate. Band members are Nick Drummond (guitar and vocals), Oliver Franklin (guitar and vocals), Andrew Pulkrabek (upright bass and vocals). Show times Monday and Tuesday at 7:30pm. Doors open at 5:30pm.

artist info

The Senate, Seattle’s foremost purveyors of “face-melting acoustic riffage,” formed in 2002 when Oliver Franklin, a rock-and roll guitarist with a classical background, went to a local coffeehouse to hear a solo set by African drummer-turned guitarist Nick Drummond. Though Nick and Oliver had been high school classmates, Oliver was unprepared for what he heard that night. “Nick’s music was memorable and technically accomplished, and he had a rhythmic approach to the guitar that I had never heard before,” says Oliver.

The two nineteen year-old musicians swapped songs after the show, and soon began writing and playing shows together. Jazz bassist Andrew Pulkrabek, Oliver’s grade-school friend and frequent musical collaborator, went to one of their early shows and heard something new as well. “I had no idea acoustic instruments could rock so hard,” says Andrew. In 2005 Nick and Oliver invited Andrew to join them for a show, and the band’s lineup was completed. The members’ diverse backgrounds in music ranging from Afro-pop to heavy metal to musical theater proved to be an asset as they began to develop their sound. Using acoustic guitars, an upright bass and three voices, the Senate began writing nuanced and aggressive music grounded in polyrhythmic grooves, three-part vocal harmonies and a heavily percussive playing style. “We talked about finding a drummer, but it turned out we didn’t need one,” says Drummond.

The Senate’s songs range from simple and introspective to driving and chaotic, a stylistic breadth mirrored in lyrics about sex, death, power, love, war, and drinking in space. The band released their first full-length recording, Live at Solstice with a sold out party at the Triple Door in downtown Seattle in March 2008. The ten-song record, produced by former Nirvana sound engineer Tom Pfaeffle, also includes a DVD of the band’s live show, recorded in September 2007 at Café Solstice in Seattle’s University District. “Our fans have been amazingly supportive of our live shows,” explains Drummond, “so when they asked for a live experience they could take home, we listened.”

With powerful walls of sound built by only two acoustic guitars, an upright bass, and three voices, The Senate’s catchy compositions, tight arrangements, and unorthodox instrumental techniques create a dynamic musical hybrid that continues to push the boundaries of acoustic instrumentation.


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